What Does a Weasel Look Like?

There is a television commercial right now in which a little girl asks "What does a Weasel look like?". This is my answer to her, and to anyone wanting more information on Weasels.

There are actually 17 types of animal that may be referred to as Weasels, including the Polecat, Stoat, Ferrets and European Mink. They are long animals, built for going into underground burrows in search of their prey, weasels are carnivores, meat eaters.

What does a Weasel Look Like?

Weasels come in different sizes from 5 inches long (12 cm) to 18 inches long (45 cm), with additionally long tails. Their bodies are very streamlined and thin. Many weasels are brown in the summer, with a white stomach, and moult to become white in the winter.  Domestic ferrets have been bred to come in other colors, including albino.

Image via Wikipedia

How do Weasels Behave?

Weasels are very smart, and good hunters. While some have been used for hunting, others have been used for fur. Some weasels, such as the Ferret, have been kept as pets, while many wild weasels are considered as pests who sneak onto farms killing birds and rabbits. Farmers will often find dead birds with their heads missing, and are sure to blame a weasel when this happens.

Image from Wikimedia

One of the weasels whose behavior is well known is the Ferret because they are often kept as pets. They sleep for more than half the hours in the day, being awake and active in the early morning and later evening. During their time of activity they are quite active, to the point of being playful. Ferrets have a behavior known as the “Weasel War Dance” in which they jump in the air, or sideways, in an invitation for a game. They are social creatures, although not all Weasels are.

Groups of Weasels are called; a business, a boogle, a gang, or a pack.

Ferrets have been introduced to New Zealand where they have become wild and have been responsible for the deaths of a lot of native wildlife. For concerns about this ferrets are illegal as pets in some areas.

Image via Wikipedia

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  1. those little critters are so interesting. I used to watch then play along the river bank.

  2. Thanks Brenda, I didn’t know ferrets were actually weasels. Yes, they certainly are a problem in some parts of NZ.

  3. A weasel of some kind killed one of my pheasant hens years ago, We found the body, no head, somebody said that when you find a body of a bird without a head it is nearly always weasels.

  4. I thought this was going to be a political piece :)

  5. Nice share..

  6. Good article with useful information. I don’t think we have any wild ones around here but I could be wrong.

  7. that is so beautiful , great article Thank you!

  8. Your article was very informative. I had no idea that weasels were smart and good hunters.

  9. Wow!! Great work on the weasles

  10. I want a ferret! As of right now though, we currently have three dogs, a guinea pig, a bunny, and a sugar glider to take care of. One more doesn’t sound too bad though.

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